IN PICTURES: Moving Light For A Life service held to honour loved ones at Wigan and Leigh Hospice

Light appeared in the darkness as an emotional service of remembrance was held at Wigan and Leigh Hospice.

After a three-year break due to the pandemic, the Hindley-based charity once again held its Light For a Life ceremony in person.

Hundreds of people came together to remember those they have loved and lost, as lights on a Christmas tree were lit to honour the life of someone special or mark a joyful event, such as a wedding or birth.

There was a ceremony outside the hospice, with chief executive Jo Carby welcoming visitors.

She said: “The Light For A Life service has been taking place at the hospice for many years and it is the most special time of the year for us.

“Gathering here together tonight we remember, mark and celebrate the lives of people we have loved and lost.

“Every one of you here has experienced your own difficult times. You have all lost someone special to you. Perhaps years, weeks or even days ago. Our thoughts are with you all.”

There was singing from the Quest Academy Trust choir, prayers led by the Reverend David Hamblett, a reading of Remember from the hospice’s clinical director Vicki McLoughlin, and Christmas songs performed by Trinity Girls Brass Band.

Lights covering a large Christmas tree were then switched on by hospice nurse specialists Lisa Taylor and Andrea Smith.

Ben Willis, 30, from Wigan, who attended the ceremony to remember his grandmother Jean Charnock, said: “My grandma spent a week in the hospice and passed away in February. It was made more difficult by Covid, but the staff did everything they could and were really supportive. The whole family thought the hospice was a fantastic organisation. You don’t realise how valuable it is until you have that experience.”

There is still time to dedicate a light on the tree to a loved one by going to the hospice’s website.

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